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Poster: unclejohn52 Date: Sep 16, 2011 2:31pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Jerry/JGB/Dead

Good to have a dialog on this jerlouvis, maybe we can kick up a few more opinions as well...

I'm certainly no expert on JGB - I only dabble there for a change of pace. I just really dig almost anything Garcia does with that guitar. For my taste, Garcia plays the most melodic solos of anyone - period. That said, I'm not looking for on-the-edge, melt your face solos every time out - just beautiful guitar music; so our criteria is different. And, since we don't know his goals for the band, it's hard to judge if he was satisfied, but he must have enjoyed it quite a bit. But, I agree that I've heard mostly the same limited set of songs as you mention, and it's possible he was playing "down" to the limits of the other musicians, ie., the known and rehearsed, well-trodden songs.

Also agree re John Kahn... and that the keyboards were a crucial element that really limited the group on some occasions. I often like Nicky Hopkins' playing, totally agree on Melvin being a snooze... but I'm not as familiar with Allers - what years was he with Jerry, so I can listen more closely? (which recordings?)

As to your last point - I can never feel cheated by what might have been. Garcia gave us so many shows to hear, so much music, millions of notes... what, about 2400 GD shows, 1400 JGB shows, Old & In the Way, Acoustic Band & Grisman shows... countless recordings. Can anyone name another performer who's given us a greater legacy or more music? But your point is taken - how cool would other possibilities have been...

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Poster: jerlouvis Date: Sep 16, 2011 4:05pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Jerry/JGB/Dead

Yeah UJ52,like we all said it is topic that has many possible discussion points,and I was hoping different areas would be explored,so the conversation would expand,you hit on a few good ones in your posts.Ozzie Allers was in the band for about 50 odd shows between Oct 79'-Nov 80',he played about as many solos as Jerry did,and some of his synth sounds could be irritating(like Brent),but he could play,I will add that I really don't care for keyboards,but if I have to hear them at least he ripped it up some.
What I meant about the safe style of playing Jerry had was the music never just reached out and grabbed you by the brain,like the Dead had the song portion and the more jam oriented portion,the JGB only had the song portion,and I would have loved to hear Jerry on his own explore his guitar in a more free form style,but that plays into 2 points you made,his objective for the band and playing down to his band mates level.I think the JGB was meant to be a good time music band,and the ability of his band mates was not on par with Jerry's.
I didn't want to seem hyper critical,I was just trying to say from a guy who was so creative and into all different kinds of music if you look at his output from 75'-95' project wise it was the GD,JGB,a short stint in Reconstruction,and a few acoustic projects with Grisman,compare that with his 70'-75' output with the GD,New Riders,Howard Wales projects,various bands with Merl,Old and in the Way,Legion of Mary and tons of studio work,it seems that 5 year span in the 70' was as full as the last 20 years of his life.I don't like to be the what if guy,but he was just so singular that I always wanted or expected more,which is of course unreasonable.